By Ben Penserga
Daily Times Staff Writer
SALISBURY, MD---On a sunny Saturday morning, the hundreds of Salisbury University students clad in neon green T-shirts were hard to miss.
As part of the school's Big Event, over 500 SU students woke up early, were handed rakes, trash bags and shovels and were deployed throughout the city's neighborhoods to help residents with home improvements. In its fifth year, the event is meant to build relationships between students and Salisbury.
"The Big Event is important for SU to continue because it lets the community know that we are here to help them," said Julia Glanz, SGA vice president of university affairs. "The community does so much for SU, and this is just our way of saying 'Thank you.' Salisbury is our home, too, and we want it to be as nice as it can be."
Over the years, the Big Event has helped everyone understand each other better, said Janet Dudley-Eshbach, SU president.
"When I came here in 2000, the larger part of the community had a lot of concerns," she said Saturday. "Events like the Big Event have turned things around. I cannot tell you how much goodwill it's created."
Shirley Creighton has used that offer of goodwill for the last few years. On Saturday, students from the school's Phi Mu sorority laid mulch and did cleanup projects at her Monitor Court home.
A graduate of SU, Creighton said she keeps participating because everyone seems to really enjoy themselves.
"We have such a great time with the kids," said Creighton, a retired educator. "There are a lot of negative things said about the kids from the college, but I know they do a lot of positive things, and this is one of them."
In one area of Creighton's yard, students Una Penninger, Bailey Kramer and Sarah Heslin raked leaves.
Reprinted with permission of The Daily Times